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L'Etoile Perdue by William Bouguereau







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Texian's Travels (Read 87718 times)
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Re: Texian's Travels
Reply #75 - Jun 3rd, 2008 at 10:02am
 
Sounds like you need to continue to process those thoughts.   Undecided  Good luck - I hope you can work things out to give you your inner peace.
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Re: F!!
Reply #76 - Jun 3rd, 2008 at 6:46pm
 
texian.traveler wrote on Jun 3rd, 2008 at 5:55am:
Grrrrr!  I spent 45 min. on a post, then when I went to post it lost my internet connection and the post!  Oh well, I guess it wasn't meant to be read.  




I hate when that happens Angry

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Re: Texian's Travels
Reply #77 - Jun 14th, 2008 at 10:54am
 
Okay, more processing, and the internet better behave itself!

Maybe I'll post about my dad's coin collection first.  Except it's linked to the processing...Oh stop waffling and get on with it!

My husband, T, moved out.  I went to visit my mother last weekend, and when I came back his closet was empty and his bag packed.  We went to Dallas and spent two days at Six Flags, then I came home and left the kids there at his mother's with him.  We still haven't told them, although they would have to be absolute idiots not to have figured it out by now.  Anyway, I was cleaning out the closet and found my dad's old briefcase.  Inside is a coin collection.  The coins aren't protected (at least most of them aren't) and most are in very bad condition.  But I have at least 50 Roosevelt silver dimes, multiple indian head pennies, some silver dollars from 1896, a buffalo nickel, who knows what. 

I plan on getting a "Blue Book for coins", but then what?  Oh, and as an aside, did you know our government used to make half dimes?  I didn't.
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Re: Texian's Travels
Reply #78 - Jun 14th, 2008 at 10:57am
 
I arranged to attend a PBS convention this summer, and I am also attending the TCWSE convention.  I found out I was going to the PBS one the week before school was out, and TCWSE maybe a month before that.  I thought I was having surgery before both, but had enough trouble scheduling it that I wasn't able to get it till after, which really is a good thing because I don't have to mess with crutches while there.  

Meanwhile T and I haven't talked about what he is doing over the summer in months.  And I realize that I haven't made any arrangements for a family member to be there after my surgery, which is assuming he will be there, and that is not fair since we had decided he was leaving.  (As an aside, I wish I could break this habit of switching to present tense when I'm typing these things.  Okay, present tense it is.  I hope.)

So the last week of school I ask T whether he is going to be there.  I mean, I didn't want to ask him to be there, because that is using him and sending mixed messages.  On the other hand, asking him NOT to be there is rejection and I didn't want that.  Plus if my children want to be there then he kind of has to be.  So I simply asked if he was.  He told me he would think about it.

This is a common occurence.  When I am trying to finalize something that he doesn't want to deal with, he asks for "think time."  Think time then extends a substantial period, in this case two weeks, and then when I ask again several variations occur.  One, I get criticized for pressuring him.  Two, I get criticized for asking him at the last minute.  (That's what happened this time, even though my surgery was 20 days in the future.)  Three, I get criticized for not having the patience to wait for his answer, which is then given with a bad grace.  Four, I get told he is still thinking.  (See One.)  The extended period of uncertainty is also my punishment, because he knows I am the "get it settled and done" type.

So I ask my mother if she can do it, since I haven't gotten an answer from him.  She talks to my cousin, and together they decide that since she is bringing me some furniture (I don't have a couch) my cousin will come take me to the surgery and take care of me the first few days while getting my house together, then my mother will come for the next few days.  But the question is what are my children going to do?  So I call T and ask if the children want to be there, because it seems to me that the first couple of days I am going to be out of it and there won't be much for them to do besides watch me sleep.  And T lets me have it. 

First he points out that he can't ask the children that question without telling them we are separating.  Okay, I can see that.  I'm out of town until next Wednesday, and we agreed that telling them while at his mother's was not fair to her, so T. was going to bring the kids down the two days I am back in town, and we were going to tell them then.  Oh I forgot the part where I got criticized for making plans like attending the conventions and not asking T what his plans were and whether having the children with him was convenient.  I do see his point, but I am still confused.  His plans consist of job hunting, which I didn't know because he has made it very clear that I am not involved in his future plans and so do not need to know them.

Job hunting is done during the day, and the children are more than capable of taking care of themselves during the day.  They had to when their school got out a week before ours did.  So unless his job hunt plans involve an overnight stay, what is the problem?  And if his job hunt plans do involve an overnight stay, what is he doing looking for a job so far from his family?  I admit to making some assumptions.  He knows we are going to stay in Waco.  I made the assumption that he was looking for work within a reasonable driving distance.  I understand wanting to be ASKED, and I admit to making the assumption that he was going to sit on his rear end the entire summer and not begin looking for a job until August, like he did in 1999 when he quit his job and like he did last year.  If having the children with him wasn't convenient, they could stay with my mother or his.  And as my mother poinlted out, my plans wouldn't have changed even if I had known his.  I didn't point that out to him, but he knows it anyway.

So my question about the children turns into this long diatribe about how he is always an afterthought.  I have never loved him.  He has never come first.  I am using him and I have always used him.  He has been unhappy since the third year of our marriage and he stayed with me only because he had promised to put me through graduate school, but he figured once I had achieved my goal of becoming an opera singer we would go our separate ways. 

Now back when we were dating, I participated in an opera.  Rehearsals were on Thursdays, which were our "date night."  And T told me I was going to have to choose betweent the opera and him.  Okay, he didn't exactly say that.  He started making noises in that direction, and I told him to be VERY SURE he wanted to say that to me, because I might not make the choice he wanted.  And he realized he was being unfair, and he didn't ask it.  I told him that performing was part of who I was, and I wouldn't give it up.
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Re: Texian's Travels
Reply #79 - Jun 14th, 2008 at 12:39pm
 
So I graduated and taught for a year, and then got married and taught for three more years, and I didn't do any performing until we had been married three years, which meant it was four years since my last show.  And T said that he wanted to do theater too, maybe build sets.  And I said no, that theater was my thing and I wanted it to stay my thing.  And that was the start of our problems.  He says now he would sit alone in the apartment and think about how it wasn't supposed to be like this, that he was supposed to have a partner.  Now when I did shows I was careful not to do them back to back.  If I had I would have been at the theater seven days a week.  Instead, I was either rehearsing Sunday through Thursday, or performing Friday - Sunday.  But he said that wasn't enough.

I have thought about why I did that, and in retrospect it was selfish and a mistake.  The only explanation I can come up with is this.  His mother made his dad the center of her world.  There wasn't a thing she did he didn't control.  She spent her life waiting for him to come home, which he did when felt like it.  The only thing she could do without his direct approval was shop, and she would only do that when it was unlikely he would be coming home.  She did this gladly, because he was everything to her.  Wherever he was was where she wanted to be, so she wanted to stay home because he was there or might be there.

When T and I were first married, he had to know where I was EVERY MINUTE.  I never felt it was coming from control, although it retrospect it probably was at least partially, but more concern and also uncertainty.  When his dad walked out the door you never knew when he would walk back in.  It took about five years before I felt like T really believed that I wasn't leaving without warning. 

So when I said, no, this is my thing, you keep out, it was because I was afraid of being swallowed up.  I didn't want what his mother and dad had, and I was afraid he expected it.  He had no friends that I knew of, no interests, he had me and only me.  I wanted him to find something else.  I wanted each of us to bring something unique to the table, something we could talk about and share.  I wanted him to find HIS thing.  I admit I did nothing to help him find it; I simply pursued my thing.    

I think one of our big problems is we have completely different views of marriage.  I see marriage like a decorative braid.  You have loops where each thread swings out on its own, and you have places where the threads are bound together.  Part of the beauty is what each thread does independently.  I think T sees marriage more like a fabric, where the two threads are completely intertwined.  Or maybe like the braid that consists of two lines straight together, never separating. 

Anyway, that was the year before I started graduate school.  He tells me now that he planned on us separating after I graduated and started my career.  My question to him was, "Then why did we have a baby together?"  He said he didn't expect to have kids.  I reminded him that my going off birth control was a mutual decision, and one we consciously made.  He said again he didn't expect to have kids, which is NONSENSE.  Or maybe his brain was working that illogically. 

Anyway, that is his explanation of why I have never loved him and only used him.  I finally asked him, if you were so unhappy why did you stay?  He told me that real men stayed, that they put their family's needs before their own, that he wanted to be there for his children since his children needed him.  Oh, and by the way, everything has become "you asked me to leave.  You threw me out.  You were unwilling to try."  The number of times he said to me, "Baby, if this is all I have I don't want to stay" don't seem to matter, although I've reminded him of those words.  He always answers that I was the one who said get out FIRST. 

He blames me for taking everything.  He says he gives and gives and all I do is take and take.  I have thought more than once, "You know, it is possible to tell me no."  If he was so unhappy and thought we weren't going to be together, couldn't he have said, "No, stay on birth control.  I'm not ready for a child." if he didn't want to come out and say, "I'm not sure I want to be with you."?  And if he was so unhappy, why didn't he ask for counseling a lot sooner?  It took him threatening to poison the cats for me to say, "That's it; we're getting therapy" and then it comes out that I've ignored his needs and he has been unhappy for sixteen years.  Why in the name of goodness didn't HE do something during those sixteen years?  This is really our fundamental issue.

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Re: Texian's Travels
Reply #80 - Jun 14th, 2008 at 1:16pm
 
There is a book called "Kingdomality."  It places people into personality types; white knights, black knights, bishops, explorers, etc.  I am a benevolent ruler.  And one thing I remember about that personality type is this.  We prefer CHAOS to stagnation.  I'm not sure what type T is.  But as an example, I was desperately unhappy in my job and I saw no way out.  So I sacrificed EVERYTHING to change it.  I sold my house, my car, moved my family overseas (sacrificing relationships) and ultimately sacrificed my marriage, although honestly this was coming.  Moving overseas just made it come faster, and maybe changed the character a little bit.

T told me several things last night.  Most of them were true.  He said I looked to a job for happiness, that I have always sought happiness in what I did rather than in relationships.  That is true.  He told me that this job I might get, that I have spent eight years trying for, won't make me happy.  I am sure he is right.  He said that he would have fought for me, defended me against any attack.  That is true.  He said I couldn't do the same for him, that to this day I have not told my stepfather he was wrong about T, that T isn't the most worthless man he's met.  It doesn't help, of course, that my stepfather's son, M, is a drug-user who has stolen from his family and molested his daughter, so by saying that my stepfather was placing T below him.  

I told T that I had realized I needed to do that, not for him but for me.  I understand it was a serious lapse on my part, and I cannot expect to have a relationship with any man if I am not willing to defend him.  (I didn't tell T that last part.)  I have asked myself if it had been someone else, someone that I loved, someone who had not failed me over and over, would I have defended him?  And to my shame, I think the answer is no.  So clearly this is something I need to explore.  Maybe T is right.  Maybe I am not capable of love.

I know I find T's definition of love scary.  He says that when you love someone nothing and no one is more important to you.  You will do anything to protect them, anything to defend them.  Their happiness is more important than your own, and worth any sacrifice.  That is what he wants from me.

I don't want that.  I want a companion.  I want someone who enriches my life and makes it better.  I want to know that I enrich their life.  I want to feel that someone can say, "Hey, you're being a jerk right now" and know that they say it for my own good.  I want someone to say, "I would have never known this or felt this without you" and know they mean it.    

I bet T is a white knight.  White knights go charging off, slaying the dragon, getting banged up in the process, and then they come back and don't understand why the villagers don't show more gratitude, and they're bitter they don't get a reward.  Black knights, on the other hand, negotiate clearly and up front what the dragon slaying fee will be, and THEN they go out and slay it.  No bitterness, no recriminations, on to the next village.  Maybe I want a black knight.  I know I don't want a white one.  Especially one that thinks if he faces a dragon for me I should do the same for him and that if I don't I don't love him.  

Anyway, so my question about do the children want to come to my surgery or not turned into two hours of everything that is wrong in our relationship and what I am going to have to do to get him back.  He told me that he would be there for me if I wanted him there, but that I had to say I wanted him there because him being there would be comforting.  Well of course it would, still, but he has also berated me for sending him mixed messages.  If I tell him to be there, without being ready or willing to do all the rest (I devote my life to you, nothing is more important to me than you, I will tell my stepfather off and if that means that I have no relationship with anyone else in my family so be it, because nothing and no one is more important to me than you) I am sending a mixed message.  And I am using him.  But if I tell him not to be there, then I have said unequivocally I reject you, you have no part in my life, you have no more meaning to me.  

All I want is to go our separate ways and still be friends.  Or at least civil.  He tells me that is impossible.  He says that while I will INTEND to be supportive, and not drag him down, I will say little things and gradually over time the children will come to reject him.  He says I won't mean to do it but it will happen.  Probably because he saw that happen with my father.  My mother never said anything.  But his insanity became more obvious when she wasn't there to mitigate it.  And gradually my relationship with him deteriorated into the non-existence we have now.
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Re: Texian's Travels
Reply #81 - Jun 14th, 2008 at 2:02pm
 
Wednesday and Thursday we went to Six Flags.  They have instituted a new policy, and they do no allow anything on the platforms of the high speed coasters.  Instead they have lockers at the bottom, and you pay a dollar and put your stuff in that.  Well, we normally carry a backpack with a change of clothes in it.  On most coasters, we could ride two and two, and just hand off the backpack to the two not riding.  On Wednesday, the Titan wouldn't even let us in line with the backpack.  So my son and I went to ride, and when we got back T was waiting for a supervisor.  He refused to ride the ride, and we spent 30 minutes waiting for this supervisor to show.  I had suggested putting the backpack in the car, but T said they would just hassle us about the drink cups instead, which might have been true since they weren't allowed in the lines either.  Personally I think they might have been cooler about us handing off the drink cups than that huge yellow backpack, but oh well.  It put a damper on the day for awhile, and I was thinking about how we can't go ANYWHERE without one of these scenes.

So on Thursday we leave the backpack in the car.  And my son wants to ride the Texas Giant but T and my daughter don't want to.  So they go to ride the Chapparal cars.  When we get off the coaster, T is waiting for a supervisor again.  This time the ride operator wouldn't let my daughter ride solo, even though the line was really short, there were plenty of cars, and four people in front of her had ridden solo.  So we sat there on a park bench for fifteen minutes or so, waiting for the supervisor and then waiting while T talked to him, and I leaned over and said first to my daughter, then to my son, "You don't have to act like this."  My daughter said, "But he does have a point.  He does have something to complain about."  And I said, "Yes, he does."  And I left it at that, but I thought to myself that I hoped in raising the children alone I would get a chance to show them you don't have to complain about everything EVERY TIME.  Some things you can let go.  You can say to yourself, this isn't worth ruining my family's day.  It didn't, by the way.  We're all so used to it it only put a damper on things for 30 minutes or so.  I don't think even that long for the children, but then they are REALLY used to it.

And going back to something I said earlier, I pointed out to T that there were two things wrong with his, "stay even though you are horrendously unhappy" philosophy.  One is that it results in bitterness where you take out your unhappiness on your partner.  Two is that it teaches your children this is normal behavior and all they can expect from their relationships.  He said something like the children would understand what we had wasn't normal, and I thought "can you really be that delusional?"  

So I am supposed to be deciding what I want T to do, and he wants me to talk to my therapist, which I can't do until Wednesday at the earliest, and I am supposed to leave my mother and my cousin hanging until then.  

I just want to be civil.  I just want to say, "It didn't work out."  I don't need the recriminations anymore.  There was a time when I did.  T says I attacked him.  He is right.  I did.  T says I don't listen, that I will never understand him and where he is coming from.  He's probably right.  But he doesn't understand either.  He says he feels betrayed by therapy; that he felt we were getting somewhere and then I turned on him and said, too little, too late.

We weren't getting anywhere.  I said, "I have pain and you caused it."  He said, "You caused me to cause you pain.  You caused me pain first."  I said, "I can't listen to how I caused you pain because I'm in too much pain from what you did to me."  Then he said, "I wouldn't have done that to you if you hadn't done this to me first."  You can see how this was a vicious circle.  We went a month or two around the circle and then another month when we just sat in place.  Somebody had to shut up and listen.  Finally I decided that, as on so many occasions before, it would be me.  And I tried.  I tried listening to his blame without responding and defending, hoping that at some point the resentment I felt inside would stop, understanding that he couldn't listen to me until he felt listened TO.

And then he showed me that it didn't matter.  Even if we got all the emotional stuff worked out, there was still the fact that he wasn't the go-getter I wanted him to be.  

I did a job interview recently, and the interviewer, who was a friend of my mother's, told me I am too honest.  The therapist said something of the same thing.  And I told T something he will never forgive me for, and is now taking out of context, applying to areas of our lives it never applied to, his normal thing.

We worked in two schools together.  I got an up close and personal view of how he interacts with his bosses and coworkers.  And I realized that he will require just the right environment to succeed.  That he is too mercurial, too temperamental, too dependent on having just the right boss.  Couple that with his unwillingness to look for work, and you have someone whose career prospects are not great.  This year is a case in point.  He resigned in February.  He should have been putting in applications since March.  Maybe he has.  He doesn't tell me his plans.  But I'm willing to bet he didn't.
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Re: Texian's Travels
Reply #82 - Jun 14th, 2008 at 2:14pm
 
Anyway, I realized that it wasn't possible for both of us to have careers.  That he needed SO MUCH support to succeed, it would take everything I had.  That he couldn't worry about children, or the house, or anything.  I can have a career by myself, but for him to succeed would take two of us.  And I couldn't do it.  I couldn't devote myself to him; I couldn't sacrifice my dreams for his.

And that is his definition of love.  

And I made the mistake of telling him that I realized both of us couldn't have careers, and that I wasn't willing for it to be him.  So now I am the selfish one willing to sacrifice anything for her career.  Which probably has more truth to it than it should.  But how could I tell him the reason was I saw him as deficient?  Better for him to think me a selfish, grasping b.... than to understand I think him incapable.    

So, what do I do now?

My goal of a civil "I don't recriminate you; you don't recriminate me; we both work together for the sake of the children" separation clearly is not achievable at this point.  I don't know what he hopes to achieve by what he is doing.  Does the "let me convince you how evil, scheming, selfish, and manipulative you are" have a purpose?  Is it to shame me into staying?  Is it to goad me into rejecting him so thoroughly whatever he does afterward is justified?  Is it just to release his pain?

What do I do when every practical conversation about "what are we going to do?" becomes a conversation about a)how I have failed him and b) how I am failing him now and at the end of it I still don't know what we are doing.  Is it going to be like this for the next seven years, until my son is 18?  Of course, at 13 children get to choose who they live with.  Maybe his dad will have gotten enough therapy to be a reasonable being at that point.  God help my son if he hasn't.
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Re: Texian's Travels
Reply #83 - Jun 14th, 2008 at 11:30pm
 
So I called my husband and told him my mother was coming for my surgery.  He was hurt I didn't want him there.  I told him he said he didn't want to be used.  He said he didn't want me to say I wanted him there when it was convenient, but to go away when it wasn't.  I told him I don't WANT to use him.  I don't WANT to send him mixed messages.  We've separated.  He's moved out, at my request.  Actually the words "I want you out" have never left my mouth.  What has been said is, "If that is the way you feel then I will leave" and I have said, "okay."  Under those conditions, how can I POSSIBLY say, "Come back when I have surgery and take care of me"?

I told him I had slept on it, and thought about it, and that he had told me what he wanted and what he needed and that I didn't think I was that person to give it to him.  I told him I thought if I said I wanted him there for my surgery, that I was saying I could be what he wanted and needed, otherwise it WAS using him.  It WAS saying "be here when I want, but only when I want."  I told him he wasn't a yo-yo.  He said that this time there were no strings like that attached, that he just wanted to know that I wanted him there because it was him, not because it was convenient, and that there was none of that other stuff in there.  Yeah, right.

Maybe he actually believes that, now.  But I guarantee had I said "yes, I want you there, and just because having you there would make me happy", and then continued our separation, it would have become a weapon to bludgeon me with.  I've experienced stuff like that too many times.  

I don't know the rules anymore.  I'm trying not to out and out reject him, because we do have children together and the more amicable our relationship the better for them.  That's why I asked if he was going to be there, in case it was something he wanted.  But it's like he won't accept anything else but rejection.  That's why I heard two hours of how awful I was and am and how victimized he is and why it ended with "Choose me to be there because you want ME."  And now he is hurt because I didn't want him.  

And in fact the truth is that I do, his presence would be a comfort, but I can't pull him back and forth like that, holding out false hope.  I feel like a doctor with a burn victim.  They have to remove the dead skin, which is excrutiatingly painful, or there is more scarring.  I have to keep causing him pain, and myself pain, because I can't live with his dysfunctionality any longer and to give in to things like wanting him there for my surgery only prolongs the agony.

But when I got home to my empty house and said, out loud, "T doesn't live here anymore", I cried.  And I wished that T COULD live here.  A happy, functional T who reaches out toward life and chooses to live it well.  And I cried because I couldn't tell him I wanted him.  That I had to pretend my rejection was total and absolute, because to do anything else was cruel.  I can't live with who he is, and I won't become who he wants.  

It upsets me that my mother assumes I don't still love him, that I don't want him around, that my attitude is, or should be, "good luck and good riddance."  Once she moved out, and she was the one who moved out, she never saw my dad again except at a divorce proceeding and my wedding.  Of course I was 18 and driving, so she didn't have to.  It was like he ceased to exist.  I had thought that was her, since she never mentioned her first husband, my brother's father, either, but now I realize that she was in the same situation I am.  I know she was, because Dad was still expecting her back on the 20th anniversary of her remarriage.    

I have been thinking about what to tell the children, and how, and when, and all those things.  And I know I can't say anything like "Daddy and I don't love each other any more."  For one thing, if we can stop loving each other, then we could stop loving THEM and no way am I even going to imply that.  But I can't say I still love him either, because there is a belief in our society that love overcomes all things.  Jesus said it does, so that must be right.  But right now, I feel like Tina Turner had it right.  

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Re: Texian's Travels
Reply #84 - Jun 18th, 2008 at 8:16pm
 
We told the children today.  They cried, of course.  And of course, it took about an hour of T yelling at me, telling me how unreasonable I am, telling me why things are unacceptable, reiterating how selfish I am, before we got to what we were going to DO, which was how we were going to tell them.

And something very telling happened.  He always objects to the fact that I make plans and then give him options.  He feels I should consult him at the beginning.  So I said, "Okay, list our options."  He said, "Well, what is going to happen with this?"  I said, "That is still basing what you are going to do off what I am going to do, which is what you are objecting to.  Pretend I have no plans.  Pretend I've never said anything.  What do you see our options as?"  And there was this silence.

He doesn't know what he wants.  He only knows how to object to what I want.  So he tried again, saying something like he couldn't make a plan without more information from me.  And I refused point-blank to give him any.  I had given him my input, and all I got was how it was wrong and I should have never made those kind of plans without him.  So I wanted to know what he thought we should do about how to tell the children without any input from me.  And in the end, he refused to do it.

I told him today I wanted to work on two things in therapy.  One, how do I have a practical conversation with him without getting an autopsy of our relationship?  Two, why didn't I defend him this summer and why have I still not?  I strongly suspect the reasons have less to do with how I felt about HIM and more to do with being a people-pleaser who can't stand to have people mad at her. 

The children tell me they'd rather live with their daddy.  I told them we would decide that when their daddy had a job, and we saw where it was and what kind it was.  I know I was focused on school a lot last year, and the children spent more time with him than me.  I understand I won't be able to do that this year.  Mom tells me that I have lived with irrationality so long, I don't even recognize it when I see it.  I am not worried about him harming the children.  I am worried that if they live with him, irrationality will become the norm.  Case in point, Six Flags. 
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Re: Texian's Travels
Reply #85 - Jun 22nd, 2008 at 9:22pm
 
My 20th anniversary was yesterday.  I did not call my husband, even though I knew he expected it.  He sent me a text message, to which I did not respond.  I hate having to hurt and reject him all the time.  And yet...

Something happened the day after we told the children.  We were on the bed in the living room, and the kids rolled in toward me and said, "Squish Mom!"  And they squeezed against me saying, "Squiiiiiiish!"  And I thought, if this had happened when T was here, I would have done one of three things.  I would have found a way to de-emphasize the moment, gotten up so it wouldn't happen again, or found a way to divert the childrens' attention to their father so he wouldn't feel neglected or rejected.  Now if you told him this, he would say he has done nothing to imply it was necessary, and this was something coming strictly from me and my own warped perception of reality.  And I couldn't point to any one thing that would have caused me to think it was necessary.  But it would have been.

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Re: Texian's Travels
Reply #86 - Jul 7th, 2008 at 4:04pm
 
I had my foot surgery on the 23rd.  My mom came to stay for the first two days, then my cousin came.  I went back home to Fredericksburg with her because there was no one to take care of me here.  She brought me back on the 29th.  T met me here in Waco with the kids.  My cousin was still here, and T was FURIOUS.  I got all these long text messages about how selfish I was, how unimportant he was to me, etc.  Apparently I didn't remember that he had requested my cousin NOT be there when he arrived.  He asked me, when he was about 10 min. away, if she was still there and I said yes.  Apparently that was my reminder of his request she NOT be there. 

My point was, okay, even if I'm selfish and I don't remember your requests because you're not important to me, you can still do something like call me when you see her truck in the drive and remind me she isn't supposed to be there or send me text message or do SOMETHING besides throw a temper tantrum.

Anway, on Wed. the 25th, two days after my surgery, I got a call that my dad had been admitted to the hospital because his dementia has progressed to the point where he doesn't eat or drink.  He was there over a week.  They sent him home today and I am enrolling him in Hospice.  Once I've done that, I'll call my brother and see if he can get me up to Dallas to say good-bye. 

The hospital originally was calling T, because when we put Dad in the facility we were living with T's mom before going to Egypt.  So he knows about all this.  And once again, he is letting me have it.  I could have prevented this.  I could have done something.  I could have done something about his house.  T looked up all this stuff for me so I could do something and I didn't.  If he procrastinates about jobs, I procrastinate about my dad.  I am teaching my children how to treat their father, which is to ignore him.

And I think my brother is right.  This isn't about love.  It's about control.  How, if he has even an iota of love left for me as he says he does, can he lay that kind of guilt trip on me when my father is dying?  But I didn't do what he wanted, which was get him involved because I can't make it without him, so I got blasted.  Every time something like this happens, it just confirms how right I was to say "enough." 

I started the seperation thinking it could be just that, a seperation.  Not anymore.
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Re: Texian's Travels
Reply #87 - Jul 22nd, 2008 at 9:28am
 
It gets better (or worse).  My father died on the 10th.  I told my husband I didn't want my children there for the service.  I really didn't want anyone there except my brother and myself.  This was in part for him.  He hadn't seen his father in 6 years and I really thought he didn't need an audience for the emotions he would be dealing with.  My husband disagreed with my decision, and got angry again.  

The inurnment was yesterday.  We came down from Waco on Saturday.  My two nephews are in a rock band that was competing on that day, and I told T that we would be going to that.  Then a friend called and told us her son was having his sixteenth birthday party that day and we could come.  My daughter couldn't decide what she wanted to do.  We had discussed T picking up the children after the performance.  I called T around 4:30 and told him we were almost to the hotel in Fort Worth and that my daughter was still undecided.  So he said he had to take a shower because he had been doing something hot and sweaty and to let him know what she decided.  She decided to see her cousins.  When I called T and told him, he was furious, and said I would have to bring the kids there; he wasn't going to get them.  I got a text message about how once again I wasn't holding to what was agreed, I had kept him hanging all day, and I was d&%m inconsiderate.  There was no mention of this when he thought the kids would choose to spend time with HIM.

I couldn't stay with him since I was leaving him and the children out of the ceremony, so I stayed with my brother.  It was a very nice visit, aside from the reason I was making it.  On Monday, we picked up dad's remains at the funeral home, then went to the National Cemetery.  The service consisted of military honors and then my brother and I said a few words.  As we were leaving, here came T and the children.  He brought them, even after I had said I didn't want them there and they had said they didn't want to go.

I have to address this.  I know he feels that I was wrong to leave the children out.  I know he feels like I disrespect him by disregarding his wishes, like with my cousin and on Saturday.  But that doesn't make what he did right.  Even if it was the wrong decision, it was MY DECISION.  It was my father, and decisions about his burial service were mine to make.  He basically told the children that I cannot make good decisions and it is up to him to "save" them from them.  Even if I deserved the disrespect, by disrespecting him, is that how he wants it to be?  Tit for tat, and an eye for an eye?  As Ghandi (and Tehvye) said, with that philosophy the whole world will be blind.  

I talk to my therapist on Wednesday.  I am thinking about waiting on confronting him on this until after I have spoken with her.  

To top it off, that evening my brother and I were in Chili's having a margarita when T called.  His neice's contractor had done a bunk and she needed a lawyer.  He wanted to know if my mother knew of one.  I gave him the name of the lawyer she used for her divorce.  Then I just sat back in shock at the sheer effrontery of the man.
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Re: Texian's Travels
Reply #88 - Jul 29th, 2008 at 11:35pm
 
Of course T found a way to blame me for bringing the kids to the funeral.  His position was that leaving them out was so potentially damaging, he had to stop me from hurting them in that way.  I called and told him he was wrong to override me like that, that even if it was the wrong decision to make, it was MY decision.  It was his position that it was his father-in-law and it was not just my decision.  Also that the decision was so wrong it was his duty to override it.  

T's position also is that the things he said to me when my father was dying were justified because a) we were estranged and b) it was so contemptible of me not to visit him when he was hospitalized.  He said he just asked himself how I could do that, not visit my dad when he was dying in the hospital.  The despicableness of that act justified him saying those terrible things to me.  And I told him that if he could have seen me after my surgery, he would not be asking that question.  They wouldn't let me get out of bed for three days unless I was using the bathroom.  I couldn't have my foot below my heart for three weeks.  It has only been one week that I could have my foot below my waist without it swelling like a balloon.  I did contemplate going to the hospital, but just didn't see how I could manage it when I couldn't handle crutching to the kitchen to help my neice microwave a hotdog.

When I called him about overriding me at the funeral, he got the vilest he has yet.  He told me he never believed in me.  He told me the reason why my mother, who is quite a big deal in education here in Texas, hasn't helped me get a job as an administrator before is because she doesn't believe in me either.  He told me I was going to crash and burn in my new position as an instructional specialist because I don't have what it takes, and he never thought I did.

I'm waiting to see how he justifies that one.
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Re: Texian's Travels
Reply #89 - Aug 1st, 2008 at 11:42pm
 
I sent T an e-mail about having the kids visit him before school starts.  He sent me an e-mail saying he refused to discuss the kids by e-mail.  I had told him, since we seemed to be miscommunicating all the time, that I wanted to ONLY make arrangements for them by e-mail.  He refused, saying his children weren't animals or property.  I don't understand what difference it makes.  It seems to me that this would protect HIM, since he claims that I am the one who always changes the agreement.  Unless, of course, things are as I suspect, and he has been taking advantage of any nebulousness in the arrangements to CLAIM I am changing the agreement, when in fact nothing of the kind was ever discussed.  Nah, couldn't be that.  (Sarcasm.)  I didn't call.

So he called me.  The last time he sent me an e-mail, I hadn't responded within four hours, so he called and accused me of ignoring it.  He said, "I know you read it."  And I thought, "You've been logging on to my e-mail."  So I changed my password.  He didn't say that this time.  Last time he called, I told him I had our daughter in the car and I couldn't talk to him, but I would call him later.  Then I sent him an e-mail.  This time I had my son in the car.  So when I said I'd call him back, he said, "Will you REALLY?  You didn't last time.  I'm still waiting for THAT call."  And I said, "Well it's just because you're so pleasant to speak with."  And my son sighed.

So after our movie (We went to see The Mummy) I called him.  He is looking for jobs out of state.  He took the opportunity to blame me, again, for not being able to do it in June.  How was I to know he was willing to forgo his kids that much?  It never even occurred to me that he would leave Texas.  But he says he is, or is thinking about it.  Clearly we are not talking about visitation every other weekend and Wednesday nights.  I told him we would work something out.  Probably I'll do what I planned if he went to Saudi, which was to take the kids to visit his mother instead.  But the only teaching jobs he is looking for are online jobs at virtual schools.  Interesting.
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